Obviously written in the late 90's as the material was incredibly dated. Cleverly written like a blog as it is grammatical inept & yet maintains aObviously written in the late 90's as the material was incredibly dated. Cleverly written like a blog as it is grammatical inept & yet maintains a low steady whine throughout like a hypergraphic email from an old friend you wish you could ignore....more
I'm sorry for lacking the vocabulary & eloquence to fully extrapolate on the problems I have with this work. Please bare with me as editing will sI'm sorry for lacking the vocabulary & eloquence to fully extrapolate on the problems I have with this work. Please bare with me as editing will surely befall my refrains from profanity.
I found this book terribly redundant. It was like an ongoing merry-go-round of anti-capitalism, self-fullfilling prophecy, unneccessary self-mutilation to justify dire circumstances, and an incessant need of public approval. Where it stops? Everybody knows. Cliche. It was a sort of bohemian re-education from SoHo during the height of the great depression which I believe could of been better served up by Studs Terkel's Hard Times than this. It did bring to my attention that I know more Harvard dropouts personally than graduates, but that was not a new revelation. I think my thoughts on Harvard has to do with the institutionalization of not so much "great minds" but rather those less inclined to embrace homogenity. Somehow this genetic abnormality called Joseph Gould is defined as genius? I don't think so! Certain people are born more stubborn others, fully incapable to bend their will to punishment, nor reward in a not so bold statement of counterculturism by default. This deserves no more praise than a basketball player born tall or an ultra-runner born with large lungs. The test comes in going against one's individual nature, to challenge one's individual fears rather than these luke warm applause for displaying eccentricacies in the society of their time. Joe Gould reminds me too much of my father, an artist, a renaissance man, a bohemian. In fact my father has said much the same things word for word Gould has said and he's not alone. Maybe a pioneer of his time? I dunno. I prefer reading Fitzgerald or Hemingway. They say much the same thing without being so damn trite about it. This material is so eerily New Yorker inbred to me that I sense my mother must of read it to me in the womb. Neither my parents nor Gould truly abhor money. Joe Gould being a reckless spendthrift as he was is undoubtedly no different then a gambler hating a rigged house as well. They cannot help their condition & are a victim of it not by choice, but rather a lack of neurological neoplasticity. Gould wouldnt be so bent on public praise either if he truly wasnt still a system junkie at heart. I think his motivations are not clearly understood because he himself doesnt know them either. That is the only "secret" worth sharing.
Let us put aside the act of killing being universally accepted as a bad thing because no, that is not universally accepted, but for my example, do let that go for a moment. Show me a man who loves killing, who is good at it, who comes from a family of successful killers who chooses to become a gardener out of desire, lives in poverty, produces some ugly & some beautiful fruit, and accepts that no one will ever see him for anything, but a "no-hack," not someone who choose to turn away from a guarenteed prosperous career to embrace something organic, simple, and true, but a failure. And there stumbles the biographer who shares "One Man's Secret." And when he says this man lothes money, but shows that he embraces frugality, spending prudently with the little money he does have, I dare call this man authentic. He dies without recognition, but he is okay with that because it is not about public opinion, but feeling right with oneself, doing something one is passionate about and gives you a sense of purpose, taking you to that once unattainable place of happiness. Not after the first harvest, not after a lifetime of facing inclement weather, failed crops, and plant diseases, its in the journey that one finds joy, the lightness of just being.
To me, gardening is like art, while participating in the military industrial complex is not just killing other people, but also yourself. There is a toxicity that permeates even in the least noticibly morally uncompromising aspects of our society, so much so we are seeing a complete deterioration of every aspect of society today that rivals the fall of Rome tenfold. Books that glotify the miscreants of society are no more relevant than the plethora of "issues" that do nothing to get at the root of things, which is why I am brought back to the classics. Give me tomes such as Les Miserables. Give me Great Expectations. Give me Farewell to Arms. Give me The Great Gatsby, but don't you dare call Gould a "mystery."...more
N Goodreads Delirium The concept for this story is absolutely brilliant. The writing is beautifully fluid and full of poetic imagery that is so rarelyN Goodreads Delirium The concept for this story is absolutely brilliant. The writing is beautifully fluid and full of poetic imagery that is so rarely seen. The emotions of our narrator are visibly palatable. Unfortunately the story itself often falls flat for me, lacking proper development of characters while having access to such a vividly constructed platform to play with. What a waste! There are many different types of editors. This story was in need of content work. Its lacking so much. Opportunities to delve into characters and situations are just passed over time and time again as if the writer was frozen and forced to choose between prose or plot. Ways to build interest and help us gravitate to these characters are over and over rejected and just ignored. All for the sake of burying us in this scapbook of favorite quotes, sayings and songs throughout that do not add to the story at all. A film adaptation would be impossible. There's nothing there!
When one's identity is being challenged and subverted, we are not so quick to push back unless we have a strength established and proper motivation. There should be a desperate and most necessary need to break free because of an understood incessant suffocation, but being a bored teenager or called "chicken" doesn't really do it for me. Rebellion is never spontaneous. It is calculated. It is pondered. It takes baby steps and then suddenly you turn around and you wonder "How the heck has it come to this? How did I even think this was sanity?" It is finally made when there is nothing to loose or everything to gain. When enough is enough. We avoid conflict. We only delve into it prematurely out of stupidity or naiveté. Or maybe something falls into our laps that is fully unanticipated and a new truth is learned that is so damning that we can never be the same so therefore our actions change as well out of survival instinct. None of this is fully attempted or actualized in order to give our characters some street cred.
The material is painfully repetitious. Each chapter poses as a short story in itself over emphasizing the rulebook of this dystopic story to set a scene that is slow to progress and lacks any action. Things happen, but our view physically is stunted to embrace this emotional and mental battleground. Re-introduction after re-introduction and I still havent a clear image of these physical shells, how they move and what their body language can add to their personalities and identities.
When I was in the middle of Chapter 18 of 27 I wanted to stop. Rarely is a story, despite its shortcomings, been this disengaging this far in. I don't really care about these kids. I have zero vested interest. No curiosity as to what they will discover and what will happen because so much seems to be trapped in the past and not looking forward into the future. This story presents no thesis, no moral clarity, no historical correlations, just regurgitated fragmented echoes of other dystopic YA worlds. The Giver, Maze Runner, Divergent, Hunger Games. Its sad when the writer could take a cue from Stephanie Meyers "The Host" for character and plot development. Yawn! It is my own insomnia that kept me reading. It neither enlightens or inspires. Just so glad its over.
It makes me a little angry as well. It could of been a masterpiece, but instead its a two dimensional pre-ma baby....more